Comparison of pre-filter and post-filter ionised calcium monitoring in continuous veno-venous hemodiafiltration (CVVHD-F) with citrate anti-coagulation

Matthew J. Brain, Owen S. Roodenburg, John McNeil

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Background It is widespread practice during citrate anticoagulated renal replacement therapy to monitor circuit ionised calcium (iCa2+) to evaluate the effectiveness of anticoagulation. Whether the optimal site to sample the blood path is before or after the haemofilter is a common question. Methods Using a prospectively collected observational dataset from intensive care patients receiving pre-dilution continuous veno-venous haemodiafiltration (CVVHD-F) with integrated citrate anticoagulation we compared paired samples of pre and post filter iCa2+ where the target range was 0.3–0.5 mmol.L-1 as well as concurrently collected arterial iCa2+. Two nested mixed methods linear models were fitted to the data describing post vs pre filter iCa2+, and the relationship of pre, post and arterial samples. Setting An 11 bed general intensive care unit. Participants 450 grouped samples from 152 time periods in seven patients on CRRT with citrate anticoagulation. Results The relationship of post to pre-filter iCa2+ was not 1:1 with post = 0.082 + 0.751 x pre-filter iCa2+ (95% CI intercept: 0.015–0.152, slope 0.558–0.942). Variation was greatest between patients rather than between circuits within the same patient or citrate dose. Compared to arterial iCa2+ there was no significant difference between pre and post-filter sampling sites (F-value 0.047, p = 0.827) Conclusion These results demonstrate that there is minimal difference between pre and post filter samples for iCa2+ monitoring of circuit anticoagulation in citrate patients relative to the arterial iCa2+ in CVVHD-F however compared to pre-filter sampling, post filter sampling has a flatter response and greater variation.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0189745
Number of pages10
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2017


  • blood flow
  • blood
  • anticoagulant therapy
  • fluid flow
  • catheters
  • flow rate
  • hemofiltration
  • medical dialysis

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